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Series Preview: Washington (D.C.) Nationals @ Seattle Mariners

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Seattle: 24-42
Nationals: 26-41

GAMES

Game 1: R.A. Dickey vs Odalis Perez*
Game 2: Erik Bedard* vs John Lannan*
Game 3: Jarrod Washburn* vs Tim Redding

Instead of drafting a college closer in order to push Brandon Morrow into the rotation (and is anyone actually buying that? I'm not yet.), the Mariners could have just used an in-house solution, Miguel Batista. With Beluga not 100% healthy, he belongs either on the disabled list or in the bullpen where his wildness is mitigated a bit and his velocity is able to go up. Furthermore, he's done it before and while he's no great shakes, it beats him starting. Odalis Perez is pretty non-descript so far this season. Very average across most categories except in homerun prevention where he sucks. Pay little attention to his decent ERA, he's been mediocre.

(Late update: And somebody finally listens! Dickey moves into the start tomorrow night taking the place of Batista. No word yet on if Miguel is headed to the pen or the DL. If it is the pen, there's an extra benefit possibility that he might take over closer duties at least partly and keep Morrow from getting saddled with dreaded saves)

There's still no official word on the probable for Saturday's game, but based on the prior rotation I'm guessing it's John Lannan and if not, I don't really care because I want to talk about Lannan anyways. Lannan is another Nationals pitcher who has an unknown name and a nice ERA but is once again a fluke driven by a near 80% strand rate. Lannan is like Odalis Perez but better at getting groundballs.

Three for three? You bet. Tim Redding has a decent looking ERA and even manages to acquire it without stranding an unsustainable percentage of runner, but alas, he has been cashing in his luck coupons on preventing hits on balls in play with a BABIP just over .250. Turns out that Redding is another meh control, can't miss bats pitcher, you know, like Jarrod Washburn (or Miguel Batista) except without the huge financial burden.

Likely Starters:
C Jesus Flores
1 Aaron Boone
2 Felipe Lopez^
3 Kory Casto*
S Cristian Guzman^
L Wily Mo Pena
C Lastings Milledge
R Elijah Dukes
D Dmitri Young^

Nick Johnson and Ryan Zimmerman are both injured (and Zimmerman might be done for the year) so you get to face this crazy terrible lineup. If it weren't for all the black people it would be like we never left Toronto!

CONTEXT

According to Cool Standings the Mariners have the third worst odds of making the playoffs at this point in the season microscopically ahead of the Royals. Last place belongs to the Nationals. If this were a weekday series I would take the under on 50,000 attendance for the three games in total. But alas it's a weekend series and a bobblehead one to boot! And now with more Dickey and less Tits!

Two lefty games means Jeremy Reed can catch up on some much needed R&R for the next three days while J.J. Putz rests his sore elbow and Brandon Morrow moves ever closer to never seeing the light of the rotation ever again. Have I mentioned that I loathe this team? I am sure there are good people in the front office, but whomever they are and however many of them there are, they're not enough to overcome the monsoon of stupid that permeates the decision making at the higher levels. This team doesn't need to clean house, it needs to Zemlya'd.

THIS SERIES BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

Moose Drool Brown Ale
Big Sky Brewing. Missoula, MT

Brownish/burnt orange in color with a small head and a toasted malt aroma typical of brown ales. Tastes a bit darker with malt, and some stout-like chocolatey elements.